One Minute Embryology

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Dr Mark Hill

These are a set of quick introductory videos with audio commentary designed to get students to begin to think about specific embryology topics. Videos have also been posted on UNSW theBox and YouTube Embryology channel. This page is began development in 2016.

These videos run for about 1 minute and are not intended as a detailed description or for use elsewhere. Look at the Human Development cartoon below for an overview of the changes seen during the prenatal period in humans.

The first videos relate to undergraduate Medicine phase 1 embryology in BGDA and BGDB.

Links: Medicine | Movies | UNSW theBox | YouTube

Thebox-logo.png BGDA | BGDB YouTube-logo.png

One Minute Movie Links: Finding Embryology | Human Development | Human Timeline | Endoderm Development | Human Face and Palate | One Minute Movies | Movies

Finding Embryology

<html5media height="400" width="600">File:1 Min Embryo - Find Embryology.mp4</html5media> A quick way to find your embryology learning materials on the web!

Designed for first year foundation students to easily locate the teaching materials that will be used for embryology in Medicine.

Note the movie itself does not contain embryology teaching content, just how to find it.

Links: Foundations Lecture | Foundations Practical | theBox

Human Development

<html5media height="384" width="352">File:Human development 001.mp4</html5media> This movie has no additional information but is provided as a simple overview. Once you have begun your studies you should be able to add your own identification of the events shown here.

An unannotated cartoon animation of human development from the first cell (zygote) through implantation, embryonic and fetal development.

Movie page including a timeline description.

The other animations on this page below include an audio commentary and labelling to aid your understanding.

Human Timeline

Here is a quick description of the early events in the human development timeline.

<html5media>File:1 Min Embryo - Human timeline.mp4</html5media>

QR-Human Timeline.png
Links: original movie page | UNSW theBox | YouTube | BGDA lecture | BGDA Prac 3 | BGDA Prac 6 | Embryonic Development | Fetal Development
Audio Script  
Hi there,

Lets look at an overview of human development

Human pregnancy occurs over 9 months.

This is traditionally divided into 3 trimesters each 3 months long.

The first trimester is mainly the embryonic period.

While the second and third trimester is the fetal period of growth.

The embryonic period is divided into 23 “stages” over the first 8 weeks.

After the last menstrual cycle, this period also covers the next 2 and a half missed cycles.

Human pregnancy is measured from this last cycle, while fertilisation occurs around ovulation of the next missed cycle.

A positive pregnancy test can be seen 2 weeks later after fertilisation.

The fertilised oocyte is called a zygote, that divides to form a morula.

Further mitotic division forms a blastocyst.

Forming a bilaminar then trilaminar embryo in week 3.

Looking at events

end of week 1 - blastocyst hatching

week 2 - Implantation in the uterus

week 3 - Key developmental processes

week 4 - the heart and other structures form

Human Embryo

Here is a quick description of the external embryonic events in human development between week 3 and 8.

<html5media>File:1 Min Embryo - Human embryo.mp4</html5media>

QR-Human Embryo.png
Links: UNSW theBox | YouTube | BGDA lecture | BGDA Prac 6 | Embryonic Development | Fetal Development
Audio Script  
Hi there,

Here is a brief description of embryonic development between week 3 to 8

In Week 3 the embryonic disc forms

Amniotic sac removal shows the epiblast layer

Gastrulation occurs at the primitive node and streak

Axial process and axes are established

The disc folds ventrally

The embryo is now 2 mm long

Watch embryo growth from week 4 onward

In week 4, somites, neural plate folding and formation of the heart

In week 5, sensory placodes, pharyngeal arches and limb buds develop

In week 6, external ear primordia and the limb plates appear

In week 7, upper lip and maxilla fuse and limb digital rays appear

In week 8, limbs grow and have mature form

The external ear fuses and eyelids can be seen

There is also overall growth in size

That has been a quick external view of human embryonic development

Endoderm Development

Here is a quick description of the endoderm events during week 3 and 4 in developing the gastrointestinal tract.

<html5media>File:Endoderm 004.mp4</html5media>

QR-Endoderm Movie.png
Links: original movie page | UNSW theBox | BGDB lecture | BGDB practical | Gastrointestinal Tract Development

Human Face and Palate

Here is a quick description of the embryonic events in the human face and palate development between week 5 and 9.

<html5media>File:1 Min Embryo - Face and palate.mp4</html5media>

Links: original movie page | UNSW theBox | YouTube | MP4 | Head Development | Palate Development
Audio Script  
Hi there,

Lets look at head and palate development between week 5 to 9.

This is a ventrolateral view of the human head in week 5.

The primitive oral cavity is located on the ventral surface.

Beneath it (oral cavity) are the large mandibular processes of the first arch.

Beside it (oral cavity) are the small maxillary processes of the first arch.

Above it (oral cavity) are the nasal parts of the large frontonasal process.

The maxillary and FNP together form the upper lip and palate.

The second view is in week 7 showing the oral cavity roof.

The palatal shelves extend from the 2 maxillary processes.

The animation runs forward to week 9 when they fuse together.

Lets watch this again looking at the fusion of the palatal shelves with the midline nasal septum.

The third view shows the anterior view of the shelves and septum fusing in week 9.

External Links

External Links Notice - The dynamic nature of the internet may mean that some of these listed links may no longer function. If the link no longer works search the web with the link text or name. Links to any external commercial sites are provided for information purposes only and should never be considered an endorsement. UNSW Embryology is provided as an educational resource with no clinical information or commercial affiliation.

Cite this page: Hill, M.A. (2024, May 18) Embryology One Minute Embryology. Retrieved from

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© Dr Mark Hill 2024, UNSW Embryology ISBN: 978 0 7334 2609 4 - UNSW CRICOS Provider Code No. 00098G